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Frames and Oil Pastels

There's the color chart of my newest artist grade oil pastels. 48 Sennelier oil pastels set, plus the unduplicated yellow of the sample primary triad (the red and blue with black marks in the upper left corners are the ones that are duplicated in the sampler), and the Iridescent White, which is very strong and lovely. I also tried it over the three sampler colors to lighten and give them sparkle.

I love how that works. This might be the medium I do a pearly shell in as part of a still life. It has just the right mother of pearl look, especially with colors under it.

Colors marked with a T, it's for Toxic. There's a small label on them warning not to spray these colors because inhaling droplets of them could be dangerous to your health. They take as much care as mineral-pigment watercolors or oils, but oil pastels are a clean medium and it shouldn't be a problem.

You saw the photo of Red Block before when I matted it. Now it's in a frame. I got a bunch of inexpensive frames for that December show and they're very cool. They're very narrow on the edge, just a little under an eighth of an inch, so it's like putting a clean black outline around the art when it's on the wall. The glass has the edges ground down so you don't cut yourself when you put the art in, but the frames don't have much depth.

I'm going to have to be careful with these for the December show, matting anything that's in pastel so there's no chance of the art touching the glass. I hope there's enough depth for a double mat on anything good sized, but most of what I'm doing is pretty small with a wide mat area to help prevent that from happening.

Watercolors or colored pencil, it doesn't matter if the glass touches the art as long as the glass is clean. So I'll have to be a little careful about what I put in the show. Of course with canvas boards, I'll just pop the glass off and leave it out.

I made heroic physical exertions getting all three boxes downstairs and let Sascha help me unpack. I gave her several pieces of bubble wrap to play with and pop all the bubbles. I've got plenty more stashed in the Bag of Packing Supplies to tuck in around Lauren's art package and any other art I'm mailing that way.

I picked the wrong shade of red for trying the Terry Ludwig pastels. It's a slightly orangy-brownish red instead of the cold purplish red I wanted. One of the Senneliers is a bright cold red, the other a very true to the middle red. So I'll have to keep trying till I find just the right red stick to fill that out.

This morning before the package came, I first woke up at seven in the morning. This is because I went to bed last night at nine. Yeah. Unheard of for me, but I was tired and yesterday was a resting-up sick day. I woke up thinking about my novel. I started seeing it in my head.

I realized that I had, all unwittingly, taken off in a new direction completely unlike what I expected it to be. I have this abused kid getting carried off by a small gnomelike fellow who seemed to be handing him a line of some kind. At least trying very hard to jolly him along and get him to come with on the magical journey, like he had a serious agenda.

I expected to throw him into language difficulties and a medieval world with traditional medieval hardships. Instead, he wound up in a world more modern but not quite contemporary. Definitely some version of America, some East Coast state... where at least one rural man is on good terms with various fey races and knows Old Harry well. It's not quite what he expected or what I did, and it's going to be fun finding out what it is! I think it's one of these settings like steampunk-magic gone past Victoriana into at least the 20th century.

It's got chainsaws but I'm not at all sure about cel phones or laptops or what year it is. I'll find out as I keep writing. I got in over a thousand words in that burst and then watched Ballad of Big Al with Sascha. The novel's back alive again though and I have a good idea I'll put more words in today, at least do 1,667 and not fall behind today. Maybe gain a little of the time I missed back, especially if I finish the chapter.

So today's been another day of getting things done. I may have some art to post later, or a higher word count, or both. 7,789 so far.
Explore-Oil-Pastels-With-Robert-Sloan.com Articles at eHow.com, ETSY shop, My Bonanzle Booth, deviantART gallery, SFFmuse and look for art by robertsloan2art on eBay. Listed on Art Blogs 4 U
Proud member of the Oil Pastel Society
Interesting art blog: Patrick's Art Blog focused on realism!
New Topical Blog: www.robs-art-supply-reviews.blogspot.com for all the cool art stuff that isn't oil pastels!


( 15 comments — Leave a comment )
Nov. 9th, 2008 01:05 am (UTC)
Those look like beautiful oil pastels. IMHO oil pastels have the richest colors of anything I've worked with. Do you use Liquin? Liquin is so easy to work with. And oil pastels are relatively easy to clean up after which I like. Unless you spill your Liquin, of course! ;)

Nov. 9th, 2008 06:05 am (UTC)
Oooh! I never tried Liquin or even linseed oil with them -- I just got started on artist grade ones and back in the old days when I was doing very cheap "real oil paintings" with them, they were composed mostly of turpentine washes. Not even odorless turpentine, just actual cheap turpentine with those cheap ones you can get and paper plate palette.

They do have rich wonderful colors although I've found colored pencils can be that luminous and some soft pastels are. They're clean and soft and don't take as long as colored pencils. I've got that waterlily in realism going right now and in some ways it's like colored pencils and others not, like that and painting.

I should try with Liquin, that'll be fun! I have some for my alkyds and if I like it as a medium I may get a larger bottle of it.
Nov. 9th, 2008 06:47 pm (UTC)
Yeah, Liquin can be habit forming, it's so neat and clean and easy. I I've used it with oil pastels for years and gotten extremely good results. If you've got a small scrap piece of canvas or scrap piece of the canvas pads, you might want to try it a little. Come onnnnn, give it a go ;) (a little goes a long way with oil pastels when you're talking about Liquin tho)

Nov. 9th, 2008 09:49 pm (UTC)
No kidding! I have ACEO canvas boards and also a pad of gessoed canvas from Fredrix that I could cut ACEOs out of. If I experiment with anything, I just do a small painting and see how it comes out. I bet it'll rock.

Liquin dries fast, like acrylics... oooh and a Liquin-varnished painting would dry hard and not need glazing either, if I used the medium heavily the "squish against things" risk vanishes.
Nov. 9th, 2008 09:50 pm (UTC)
Of course I would have to make sure that I don't use Liquin to varnish over areas that have no medium in them or it could be that lean over fat disaster, since OPs don't ever fully dry on their own.
Nov. 9th, 2008 10:16 pm (UTC)
This is just what works for me... I use a very small amount of the Liquin to push the paint around with. Then when the whole thing is done and about as dry as it will get, I glaze over the top of the whole thing with Liquin, like varnish, but lightly so that I don't push off any of the oil pastels. Hey, it's one of those things that may/may not work for you, but it might be a fun experiment. I don't worry much about the lean over fat or vice versa thing because I usually paint thinly with the oil pastels because they are so bright and lush even thinly put on. As far as Liquin goes, it's like everybody has to pick out their own favorite mediums, but it's fun to try different ones because you never know when one will grab ya.
I'd run into an old art school acquaintance at an art show and asked her how she'd gotten this beautiful glossly thick varnish over her huge oil painting. She said "it's just Liquin." I never knew if that was totally all of it, but I tried it on my own on small paintings and got very nice glossy finishes. Some people don't like glossy. I do :)
Nov. 9th, 2008 10:30 pm (UTC)
That's exactly what I mean! I think if I go thinly and paint rather than go thick and squishy impasto, it's perfectly stable and will dry solid right through. Just like doing turpentine washes with them. I love the colors. I love their texture dry too, so I may do that as an underlayer and scribble over it.

But doing it as a painting and Liquin as varnish would rock too. So would Liquin-varnishing alkyd paintings, come to think of it, though I've been using Da Vinci Retouch Varnish for that.

I put the big bottle on my December order so that I won't run out of it and get annoyed.
Nov. 9th, 2008 10:17 pm (UTC)
oops, meant glossy, not glossly
Nov. 9th, 2008 10:30 pm (UTC)
lol typos in comments are like stumbles in conversation. No biggie.
Nov. 9th, 2008 11:09 pm (UTC)
I figured that's what you'd meant.

I've got DaVinci retouch varnish on my Blick "wish list" to try out now too. Michael's didn't have it when I made my semi-annual pilgrimage there a couple of weeks ago. That sounds like a fun thing to try out too with the op's. It seems like a long time to wait in between Blick orders!

Nov. 9th, 2008 11:17 pm (UTC)
Not really. I do them most months, so we're talking wait one month to get -- some extra. Maybe two months. I reconsidered it on the December order since I have an actual unused entire small bottle of it and had to think realistically.

I paint small. I'm frugal with mediums. The sansodor that I used up took eight months to use up in a little jar like that. Maybe I don't need the big jar till February or so. I balanced it against the other things I'm doing, but it could still go in if I get more sales between now and then, which I'm not getting much.
Nov. 9th, 2008 11:59 pm (UTC)
Merchandising displays this time, but you might be interested? Perhaps for when you have your own stall at a Ren Faire? *hint hint*

Nov. 10th, 2008 12:03 am (UTC)
Thanks for the link, but I haven't got the money or the storage for merchandising displays yet. Some of it is really good stuff I'd enjoy if this was when I was looking for it.

I'm probably not going to do Renfaire, but next summer I definitely have a plan if I'm strong enough to do the local summer art fair in may or june. For that I need a folding table, a prints rack (not too spendy, looked that up on Blick) and something I wanted all these years -- the Testrite Display Wall, which has three long aluminum shelves for matted and shrink wrapped artworks and can get an extender to give it four.

But the table and prints rack would be enough for a start. Some of those things like the zippered presentation folio look very exciting, I just can't afford to do them right now. Spent all of this month's money.
Nov. 12th, 2008 04:20 am (UTC)
Robert, I'm glad to hear you got so much accomplished! I'm giggling here, because you are even MORE proliphic with your words here on your beautiful blog, than you are on the Ebay forums! DEB a.k.a. Artshtick
Nov. 12th, 2008 09:28 am (UTC)
Re: Accomplished
Thanks! Now if I can just keep it up on my novel. I fell behind on it and I'm still trying to catch up. The happy thing is that sometimes I get other things done while procrastinating/ruminating on what comes next.
( 15 comments — Leave a comment )


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Robert A. Sloan, author of Raven Dance

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